Monday, January 11, 2010

Dylan/Handel… and Milton, Koestler

Thanks to Martin Schaefer in Basel, Switzerland:

“Concerning Dylan/Haendel, there is an even closer link at the beginning of “It’s Alright Ma” (‘Darkness at the break of noon’):

‘Total eclipse – no sun, no moon, All dark amid the blaze of noon’ –

this is the first line of Samson’s great aria in ‘Samson Agonistes’, the musical rendering of John Milton’s epic poem.

Of course there is an even better argument for Dylan’s being aware of Milton than of Haendel’s music. In Milton, the line goes:

‘O dark, dark, amid the blaze of noon, Irrecoverably dark! total eclipse, Without all hope of day.’

“And then there was Arthur Koestler’s ‘Darkness at Noon’, of course.”